MOSCOW, November 11. /TASS/. Almost 24,000 people in four regions of Russia’s Central Federal District were affected by electricity blackouts on Friday night as a result of a heavy snowfall intermittent with rain and ice rain, a spokesman for the Central Regional Office of the Ministry for Emergency Situations told TASS.
"According to the data available at 8pm on Friday, electricity outages affected as many as 286 populated localities with almost 6,000 dwelling houses and about 24,000 residents in the Tver, Vladimir, Kaluga, and Moscow regions," the source said, adding there were almost 5,000 children among the population of the towns and villages in question.
Located in the zones of outage are nineteen ‘socially significant facilities’ — hospitals, schools and so on. They have been connected to standby power supply sources.
Emergency repair works were in full swing in all the population centers at the time of reporting. Doing the repairs were more than 640 rescue and repair workers.
Russia’s Central Federal District is in the grips of a harsh cyclone that pours out heavy snow and ice rain, which aggregate on the cables of electricity transmission lines and cause multiple cable ruptures.
In a case rather rare for Russian railways, which have earned acclaim for reliability of operations in all types of weather, the icing of aerial contact wires caused disruptions in the operations of commuter and long-distance services on at least three major railway lines connecting Moscow and other parts of the country. Tens of thousands of people found it impossible to get to their workplaces on time on Friday morning, as trains were cancelled or delayed indefinitely at the Moscow-Smolensk, Moscow-Bryansk and Moscow-St. Petersburg lines.
Russian national airline Aeroflot cancelled 89 outbound and inbound flights at its Sheremetyevo airport hub. There was no passenger congestion at the airport’s five terminals, though, as Aeroflot issued cancellation and delay notifications in advance.